Credit: Mars One

Credit: Mars One

Those signed up and patiently waiting for your trek to the Red Planet via the Mars One program, you might put on the speed brakes a bit and read a new analysis of the effort by a team of MIT students.

Flagged by Marcia Smith at News, the MIT review paints a picture of the outcome. The appraisal was delivered at the recent International Astronautical Congress held last week in Toronto, Canada.

The MIT study was supported by grants from NASA and the Josephine de Karman Fellowship Trust.

Go to Smith’s “MIT Analysis Paints Bleak Outcome for Mars One Concept” at:


Additional information on the Mars One mission plan – and likely a response to the MIT assessment at some point — can be found here:

Meanwhile, what do you think?


2 Responses to “Mars One Mission: Red Planet Pilgrimage Critiqued”

  • To clear up an apparent miss step in this article:

    “crop growth, if large enough to provide 100% of the settlement’s food, will produce unsafe oxygen levels in the habitat. As a result, some form of oxygen removal system is required–a technology that does not currently exist.”

    The above quote is from the article, in question, and is patently false or at best very misleading. Yes on a purely vegetarian diet, you would have to grow such a staggering amount of vegetation that O2 levels would rise above levels considered safe for electronics and materials that are not designed to cope with higher flammability. I would even agree that it is possible for the levels to rise to unsafe levels for humans to breath, though highly unlikely.
    However to say that no technology exists, to lower oxygen levels, is to ignore the fundamental processes of animal life.

    Excess O2 can be dealt with by having your crew step onto a treadmill, or burning some excess plant material (although i wouldn’t suggest it due to carbon mineralization problems), or the production of animal food sources.
    It is silly to believe that the colonists will be vegetarians anyways, it just makes no technical since the excess space required for that level of plant production would be far too cumbersome.

    Evan if you don’t consider biological process as acceptable for consideration, from my experience working on mechanical oxygen concentrators with the USAF, I can also tell you there is most certainly and undeniably technology for removal of oxygen.

    And if all el’s fails you can simply burn hydrogen in a controlled manner, Fusing H and O2 into H2O which was lost to photosynthesis to begin with

    For Reference:

  • Phillip says:

    Hi fellow Marstronauts– I am an advocate for what Mars-One is trying to do– be they successful now or a little later, I am sure they won’t go until all the safety measures have been put in place. Phil

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